Some concerned parents have contacted the Mattel toy company with allegations that one of its dolls utters words which promote Islam.
The Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo dolls are manufactured by Fisher-Price, which is part of the Mattel toy empire. However, a number of parents contacted the company when they heard the doll say these words: "Islam is the light."
While the doll appears to utter "Islam is the light," the company denies that is actually what it is programmed to say. Mattel insists that Little Mommy Cuddle 'n Coo features realistic baby sounds, including cooing, giggling, and baby babble, with no real sentence structure. The toy company claims the only scripted word the doll says is "mama."
Mattel also contends that because the original sound track is compressed into a file that can be played through an inexpensive toy speaker, actual sounds may be imprecise or distorted. Jan Markell, founder and director of Olive Tree Ministries
, is skeptical about Mattel's explanation.
"It does seem to be saying, 'Islam is the light.' I don't think too many people would argue with that, so I think they're being a little disingenuous," Markell points out. "And this is not a healthy thing to be putting out in the marketplace when we're in a war on terror, and little children are so susceptible to the messages they hear -- even from a doll -- then to take them into the school and talk about them. So yeah, this is a serious thing."
Mattel admits the doll makes a sound that may resemble the words "night," right," or "light." To avoid any potential misinterpretation, they have eliminated that segment of the sound file from future production.